Oxfordshire's Xerion Healthcare to Research Post Brain Surgery Treatments with Innovate UK Smart Grant

Oxfordshire's Xerion Healthcare to Research Post Brain Surgery Treatments with Innovate UK Smart Grant

Medicines Discovery Catapult (MDC) and Xerion Healthcare have been awarded Innovate UK SMART Grant funding for Brain surgery research.

Specifically the funding will examine post-surgical radiotherapy treatment on aggressive brain tumours.

MDC are a Cheshire based non profit organisation funded by the UK government. Xerion are based in Oxfordshire. The firms are part of a research conglomerate who will receive a share of the Innovate UK pot of £25million.

The median survival time for patients with brain tumours is an average of 15 months.

The current treatment approach includes surgery to remove as much of the tumour as possible, followed by radiotherapy and chemotherapy. However, it is common for the tumour to return to the site of removal, and regrowth is often rapid.

Xerion, an SME spin-out from the University of Oxford will now progress its unique nanoparticle treatment which increases radiotherapy effectiveness. The radiotherapy-enhancing nanoparticles will be released into the remaining tumour in an advanced clinically relevant in-vivo model developed at MDC. The group will then study tumour regrowth with and without the nanoparticles to demonstrate efficacy, using MDC's pre-clinical radiotherapy platform and advanced imaging capability at its state-of-the-art laboratory in Cheshire.

Dr Gareth Wakefield, Chief Technology Officer at Xerion Healthcare, said: “By partnering with the experts at MDC, Xerion will be able to apply its nanoparticle radiotherapy enhancing technology to a realistic model of this disease, bringing novel treatments closer to the clinic.”

Dr Martin Main, Chief Scientist at Medicines Discovery Catapult, said: "At MDC, we are driven by reshaping drug discovery for the benefit of patients, and this project is the epitome of that."

Dr David Jenkinson, Chief Scientific Officer at The Brain Tumour Charity, which funds world-class research and provides trusted support for anyone affected by brain tumours, said: “Brain tumours remain the biggest cancer killer of the under 40s, and, unlike many other cancers, survival rates have not yet significantly improved over the last 40 years. We urgently need to find kinder, more effective treatments to reduce the harm this devastating disease causes for so many.


Read the original article on The Business Magazine.